Clinique Arago

Knee prosthesis

Osteoarthritis is wear and tear on the cartilage of the knee. The friction surface between the femur, tibia and patella is gradually destroyed. This deterioration causes pain and/or stiffness. It develops slowly and progressively, with attacks and less painful phases. When the wear and tear is not too advanced, treatment by injections into the knee can be considered. This can sometimes postpone surgery by a few months or years.

Ranking 2016 - 2017 Le Point:

In 2017 the Arago clinic remains No. 1 for knee replacement in France

Before the operation:

For a surgeon to decide with a patient to have a knee prosthesis fitted, there must be:

  • Significant and prolonged pain (or discomfort) that is resistant to medical treatment.
  • And an X-ray of the knee confirming that the joint has worn down.
  • A full pre-operative check-up will be compulsory, including a consultation with a cardiologist and an anaesthetist, a blood test and a specific X-ray to measure the dimensions of the prosthesis required.

During the operation:

      • The skin incision is made on the front of the knee.
      • The operation lasts approximately 1 hour 30 minutes.
      • A blood recovery system enables the volume of blood lost during the operation to be reinjected into the patient.
      • The knee prosthesis is usually made up of 4 elements that replace worn areas of friction.
        Some components are fixed to the bone (femur, tibia, patella), while others are assembled together.
        Metal (various possible alloys based on Chro-me-cobalt, titanium or Oxinium) and polyethylene (a special industrial plastic) are the most common materials used in this type of prosthesis.
        There are dozens of types of knee prosthesis, which the surgeon chooses to suit each individual case.
      • The patient is only allowed to return to the ward after being monitored in the recovery room for around one to two hours.

After the operation :

    • From the second day after the operation, the patient can sit up; walking is started with crutches, as soon as possible in the days following the operation to avoid phlebitis (blood clot in a leg vein).
    • The redon drains (small tubes placed under the scar to draw out blood and prevent haematomas) are removed on the third day after the operation.
    • The average length of stay at the clinic is one week, but this is tending to decrease with recent advances.
    • Re-education is necessary, usually in a suitable centre, for around 2 to 4 weeks.
    • The knee will often remain moderately swollen for several months after the operation, which is normal.

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